Side Fenestrations Provide an "anchor" for a Stable Binding of A1899 to the Pore of TASK-1 Potassium Channels
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A1899 is a potent and selective inhibitor of the two-pore domain potassium (K2P) channel TASK-1. It was previously reported that A1899 acts as an open-channel blocker and binds to residues of the P1 and P2 regions, the M2 and M4 segments, and the halothane response element. The recently described crystal structures of K2P channels together with the newly identified side fenestrations indicate that residues relevant for TASK-1 inhibition are not purely facing the central cavity as initially proposed. Accordingly, the TASK-1 binding site and the mechanism of inhibition might need a re-evaluation. We have used TASK-1 homology models based on recently crystallized K2P channels and molecular dynamics simulation to demonstrate that the highly potent TASK-1 blocker A1899 requires binding to residues located in the side fenestrations. Unexpectedly, most of the previously described residues that interfere with TASK-1 blockade by A1899 project their side chains toward the fenestration lumina, underlining the relevance of these structures for drug binding in K2P channels. Despite its hydrophobicity, A1899 does not seem to use the fenestrations to gain access to the central cavity from the lipid bilayer. In contrast, binding of A1899 to residues of the side fenestrations might provide a physical "anchor", reflecting an energetically favorable binding mode that after pore occlusion stabilizes the closed state of the channels. © 2017 American Chemical Society.
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